Sunday, July 10, 2011
The earth is breaking up! ( Jakata tales )
Other animals got caught in the panic. The word spread from mouth to mouth, and soon everyone heard about the earth breaking up! It was not long before the whole jungle was on the move. Reptiles, insects, birds and four-footed animals fled in wild disorder, and their cries of terror filled the air.
A lion standing on a hillock, saw the animals coming and wondered what was going on. He hastened down and positioning himself in front of the horde, and called for it to stop. His commanding presence stemmed the rising tide of panic among the animals. “The earth is breaking up!” shrieked a parrot, alighting on a rock near him. “I heard it from the monkeys."
The monkeys said they had heard it from the tigers, who said their informants were the elephants, who gave the buffaloes as their source. When the hares were finally implicated they pointed one to another until the one who had started it all was identified. “What makes you think the earth is breaking up?” the lion asked him. “I heard it cracking with my own ears”, squeaked the hare, trembling in fear.
The lion investigated the sound the hare had heard and found that it had been caused by a large coconut falling from a tree. It had landed on a pile of rocks, causing a minor landslide. “Go back to your homes,” said the lion to the animals who had been running away, and who were now looking very foolish. “The earth’s safe. And next time, check a rumour before acting on it."